Wednesday, February 22, 2017

Wednesday with Words: School Education, Vol 3

I enjoyed Volume 6 and decided to move into Volume 3 of Charlotte Mason's tomes.  The whole first section is about authority.  When I read it years ago I was looking for a debate.  This time, I am convicted.  Why is authority so hard in this day and age?   There is good reason she starts there.  It is in authority that kids are able to feel safe.  We studied the Good Shepherd this weekend in 1st grade - when you know someone is looking out for you it gives you freedom.  As CM explains:

She discusses "masterly inactivity" as a key function of teaching.  Students know you have the authority to act but you allow them the space to discover, try, fail and learn on their own.  That only works when they know they are safe.   Am I acting under authority and showing that to my children? 

In the end CM education comes down to these two key principles: 

Can it be that basic?  This is simple but not easy territory.  Our role is to point - not prod - kids into relationship with the world around them.  My experience has overemphasized the "ideas" and left habits up to chance.  Now to undo that pattern in myself and my kids.  I think my parents tried hard but I was stubborn.  In the end, she explains:

I think they tried to initiate - but I never followed through.  I didn't get the value of habits.  Honestly, CM expects the teacher to point but the student to take up and read.  It really is self education that counts. 

So, these are things I am thinking about this week.  Am I helping to initiate relationships with living ideas? What sort of habits do I have? What about my children?  Unfortunately, I think we have allowed many bad habits to go unchecked.  We'll see what the second half of the book holds this coming week.  Yes, I am rushing through and not savoring - but I am thinking! 

See what others are reading at ladydusk.  

1 comment:

  1. The liberty/license dichotomy is one that I keep running into over the last 10 years or so. Thanks for this quote!